Broward teacher brings icons to life for Black History Month

Each day, educator takes on new figure -- all in costume

By Terrell Forney - Reporter

LAUDERDALE LAKES, Fla. - In Kimberly Foster-Baldwin’s classroom, historical figures literally come to life.

Each day this month, the Lauderdale Lakes Middle School teacher is dressing up as black icons like Coretta Scott King and scientist George Washington Carver to drive home a black history lesson to her sixth-grade students.

“You get to tell the story of Rosa Parks, but you also get to tell the story of Katherine Johnson who was the first mathematician at NASA,” Foster-Baldwin said.

And it’s all part of this passionate instructor’s way to make learning memorable on a subject she says that kids were just not grasping through traditional means.

“One day I decided if I can get enough clothing together— and become the characters and enact their lives, I felt like the kids would understand it better, and they would appreciate it.” Foster-Baldwin said.

Students have seen Foster-Baldwin dressed as Revolutionary War hero Crispus Attucks and poet Maya Angelou. Just this week, Foster-Baldwin took on the role of Henry Box Brown, a 19th-century slave who famously fought his way to freedom.

“It makes learning interesting because you’re learning about somebody that you never knew that existed,” student Travis Nolton said.

Foster-Baldwin was recently recognized as teacher of the year. The material is proving to be just as fun as it is educational.

“I want them to leave my class not only educated but also feeling like they belong to something, they have a purpose and to go out and teach others,” Foster-Baldwin said.

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